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PhD course fall 2015

Chinese dieticians: impressions from a mobility program for early career researchers in Denmark

The Danish Chinese Research & Mobility project has given the opportunity to two Chinese researchers from Fudan University, Shangai to come to Aalborg University in Copenhagen in order to learn more about ICT assisted methods for measuring diet & behaviour in complex foodscapes and to exchange experiences with experts from different countries.

Yan Wang (pictured above, left) is a clinical dietitian at the university-affiliated Huadong Hospital, and Kuang Zhichao (right) works as a technologist in the Department of Nutrition and Food Hygiene, School of Public Health. 

The purpose of the mobility program was to learn about data collection of nutritional status among patients and to exchange views regarding practices between China and Denmark. The overall aim was to contribute to the study of uncovering barriers for good nutritional professional practices among nurses, doctors and assistants in hospital settings.

Developed in previous projects such as Food4Growth (www.food4growth.aau.dk) and dVices4Food (www.dVices4Food.aau.dk), the exchange is part of a tradition for Danish Chinese cooperation in the field of improving health outcomes for patients at hospital by developing the quality of nutritional services offered for the patients and aimed at reducing the risk of malnutrition at hospital. It has included researchers on senior, graduate and doctoral level at the universities of Aalborg in Copenhagen and Fudan in Shanghai.

During their stay, Kuang Zhichao and Yan Wang followed presentations and expert lectures, as well as a demonstration of the different ICT assisted methods:

  • Dietary Intake Monitoring System (DIMS)
  • Nu3Monitor
  • eButton
  • Foodscape tracker
  • NANA touchscreen technology
  • HeatMapping the buffet
  • Virtual Food Choice Simulator

While working in small groups, they received hands-on experience with the eButton, the DIMS and the foodscape tracker. In order to observe how the different instruments work in practice, the program also included the visit of a nursing home and a central kitchen in a hopsital. There was also time allocated for self-study and for the young researchers to develop their own protocol, presentation and report.

Yan Wang and Kuang Zhichao view the exchange as an important contribution to advancing the science of nutrition at hospital and consider that it will facilitate the development of new welfare technology use both in the danish and chinese health care systems.The excahnge was supported by the F4G project and SC Van foundation.